Thursday, December 19, 2013

Thursday Thoughts...

At one magical instant in your early childhood, the page of a book—that string of confused, alien ciphers—shivered into meaning. Words spoke to you, gave up their secrets; at that moment, whole universes opened. You became, irrevocably, a reader. 

Alberto Manguel

Reading is my constant companion. I always knew I was a reader, and in many ways as I grew up I assumed everybody was. But not everybody is, and not everybody can be.  So it's a little miracle really that we are able to find ways to make "that string of confused, alien cyphers" into something that makes sense.

What an extraordinary way to unlock meaning and knowledge.  How remarkable it is that we have devised these ways of communicating and that somehow we learn to decipher these forms.

I am forever grateful that I am a reader; that I love reading and have always enjoyed it. It has rarely been a chore (altho I must say just to hear the words Tess of the D'Urbevilles still fills me with horror - my worst school reading experience ever - no time at all to read and a very big book).

Reading is by no means the only way to discover universes and worlds beyond our immediate surrounds - story telling does that, music can do that, looking at art does that, digging and planting can do it, travelling and experiencing different cultures does it, day-dreaming is pretty good too - all these wonderful experiences open up the world; but reading is my first way.


On a road in Pirlangimpi…some see remnant metal strapping; I see an R.

8 comments:

  1. I used to take the act of reading for granted --- it came so easy to me and I can't remember the time BEFORE I could read.... BUT my son's immense struggle with reading has brought home to me that books aren't regarded as friends by everyone..... just as my recent research project reminded me that widespread literacy is a very recent phenomenon.... so now I know that the skill, the act of reading should not be glibly taken for granted.....

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    1. Absolutely Ronnie, it truly is a miracle it happens I think...but I a grateful that it did for me.

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  2. Yes, such an elegant and yet so rough and ready an R.
    I so agree that reading provides a door to so many experiences and enlightenments. I also cannot remember that eureka moment when everything was clear, but like you cannot remember not being able to read. To me reading was second only to breathing when I was growing up.

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    1. Reading is a great companion Olga isn't it? And as an adult I am a bit baffled by how it happens I must say! how those black marks convert into sound and signs and a language...

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  3. I am a reader too - with great and continuing pleasure - and count myself so lucky to take delight in wonderful language and to have the open door to other worlds and wonderful opportunities.
    As I spent 25 years of my working life teaching children who found great difficulty in learning, I know too how painful reading can be for some. Only some of the children I helped went on to read with real pleasure which I am sad about but almost all gained enough skill to regard the task without overriding fear. So, for me, reading holds two sorts of pleasure, my own personal enjoyment and that of seeing others gain a skill they thought they would never master.

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    1. So good to have both perspectives in your life isn't it Charlton? I think I took it for granted for a very long time...

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  4. It can never be said often enough - hurrah for reading, hurrah for books, long may they give pleasure! "A house without books is like a room without windows."

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    1. Thanks Margaret, I join you in your cheer!

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I appreciate your thoughts and comments; thanks for taking the time.